We’re all doomed

Don’t worry, we’re not really. Doomed that is, well at least not as far as I know. To be fair, if we were all doomed I’m pretty sure the powers that be would get in touch with someone important (like the Pope) or wise (like the Dalai Lama)* rather than me….. Moving swiftly on before I get myself into trouble.

All kinds of things ‘hold me back in life’. Some of the things that hold me back feel insurmountable at times and I know I have to hold on tight, work hard and keep my head if I’m ever going to deal with them. And that’s fine. I know what my goals are.

At the same time, some of the things that hold me back aren’t so huge and I know that the answer to overcoming them is entirely in my gift. Like for example, the fact that I’m shy.

There you have it. I’m shy and I lack confidence but (and here’s the thing) that’s not because I’m mental. It’s a simple character trait. Sometimes, when you’re mental it’s too easy to forget that you have a ‘personality’ at all – everything gets bound up with your difficulties whether it belongs there or not.

When my mental tendencies get mixed up with my shyness I start to think that I’M DOOMED. Except of course, I’m not doomed. I’m just a bit** mental and a bit shy.

As I said – I’m working on the mental health stuff but there isn’t a magic wand and I just have to keep plugging away. What I tend not to remember is that I have to work on the shyness stuff too – there isn’t a magic wand for that either, but then again I can at least put my mind to it.

So, in light of that, I spent this afternoon deliberately doing things I don’t like doing because I’m shy. That’s deliberately…. as in, on purpose. I stand by my assertion that this is nothing to do with being mental!

Shyness is, in some ways, a little bit like mental health difficulties: everybody experiences it slightly differently even though it has a common name. For me, the biggest part of my shyness is the ‘fear’ that I will ‘look’ foolish. It’s a bit like anxiety, but not quite… sometimes I get anxious and I know how that feels, but most of the time I’m shy and I know how that feels too.

In order to avoid looking foolish I avoid situations where ‘I don’t know what I’m doing’, or where I feel ‘conspicuous’. This means I hardly ever do anything new. It also means that I don’t do some really simple things that I’m perfectly capable of doing, and for that matter, enjoying.

Here’s what I’ve been up to this afternoon

1. Inviting Mr Friendly to dinner even though I was scared he would think it was a stupid idea and that I would end up feeling foolish.

2. Going into a brand new coffee shop, purchasing a beverage and drinking it there even though I had never been in there before and was scared everyone would look at me because I was on my own.

3. Wandering around the boutique type shops in Surbiton even though I had never been in them before, had no money to buy anything and was scared everyone would think I didn’t belong there.

4. Using the coinstar machine in the supermarket even though I thought I might not be able to work it and that everyone would look at me and think I was a fool.

5. Buying an ice lolly on the way home AND EATING IT IN PUBLIC on my own

It seems like a pretty small list of achievements I guess doesn’t it*** but I don’t care, because I decided I was going out of my comfort zone just because I could if I tried. And I did it. And I had a pretty okay day all things considered.

Lots of bravery and love from WeeGee xx

*Did you see what I did there?!

**Okay – a lot mental

***Oh no, am I feeling foolish now?!

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28 comments

  1. Well, I couldn’t have done any of those things so well done! I get the shyness; oh, I get that shyness all too well. It’s crippling, isn’t it? Still, you seem to be doing amazingly.

  2. One thing I wonder is this: What’s the difference between shyness and social anxiety? I’m pretty sure that what I have is social anxiety and not shyness, but from the way you describe shyness, it sounds a lot like me, so now I’m not so sure.

      1. Interesting. I can do social situations if I have to, but I do practically everything that’s listed on that link’s page, so I think it is social anxiety. When I have to force myself into a social situation, I have to mentally prepare myself then have time to detox afterward.

  3. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say it seems as if you are leaps and bounds from where you recently were; not exactly feeling fluffy-fantastic, however… That (not-so-small) list of achievements sounds a lot like confidence to me. Sometimes, a little is a lot. 🙂 I’m happy for you!!

    By the way… Ice lolly? That made me laugh. 🙂 A combination of the words lollypop (candy sucker) and popsicle (apparently, same thing as an ice lolly.) I love that we live in such distinctively different places! 🙂

    High five WeeGee.

    1. Oh good grief! Maybe I should type a few more smiley faces for good measure. How ridiculous.

      Although… The irony is too much to keep myself from lauhing, you know… You’re talking candidly about depression and anxiety and I’m typing fifteen and a half smiley faces between every other word. Umyeah… Wow.

        1. Sounds super to me 🙂 I love tiaras. I used to wear one every weekend but then I had to ‘grow up’ or somefink.

          I’m a bit over excited about my tiara. Such is my way 😀

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